Maple Pecan Pie Bars

Did you know that companies can’t make the claim that something is “maple” in Vermont without adhering to certain Vermont laws? This came to light with the McDonald’s debacle with their Fruit and Maple Oatmeal. Per Vermont statute Chapter 32: Maple Products:

Β§ 493. Labeling container of artificial maple flavored products
It shall be unlawful to use the term “maple syrup” or “maple sugar,” however modified, to describe any product, flavoring, sweetener or food additive unless the product, flavoring, sweetener or food additive so described meets the statutory definition of “maple syrup” or “maple sugar.” Terms such as “artificial maple syrup” or “artificial maple sugar” are declared to be misleading and deceptive and may not be used in the labeling or advertising of any product. Terms such as “artificial maple flavor” or “artificial maple flavor sweetener” may be used to describe a product flavored or sweetened with a substance which attempts to duplicate real maple flavor, providing that words such as “artificial,” “flavor,” and other modifiers of the word “maple” shall appear in equal prominence to the word “maple” on the label and in all advertising of the product. (Added 1981, No. 235 (Adj. Sess.), Β§ 1.)

maple syrup barsThey take their maple syrup seriously up there! There was an agreement reached with McDonald’s that their “restaurants” (and I use that term very loosely) located in Vermont must provide real maple syrup or real maple sugar for their patrons to use, upon request, in the product–seems like a lame cop-out to me. It may be an obscure law most people weren’t familiar with, but at least it aims for truth in advertising–something completely lacking in fast food in general.

Maple-Pecan Pie Bars

This, on the other hand, I can assure you has real, 100% Vermont maple syrup, directly from the Mad River Valley. Love that area! Please be kind to Vermont and use some of their syrup in yours, too. Or they might get on YOUR case! πŸ˜‰

Maple-Pecan Pie BarsMaple-Pecan Pie Bars
discovered on Ezra Pound Cake

Crust:

  • 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 8 Tablespoons (1/2 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 9×9 baking dish with foil, leaving some overhanging the sides for easy removal later, and grease the foil lightly with butter or cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, brown sugar, and sea salt. Drop in the cubes of butter and, with your hands or a pastry cutter, work it into the flour mix until you have pea-sized crumbs. Dump into the prepared baking dish and press evenly. Bake until edges are lightly browned and center is firm, about 12-17 minutes. Set aside.

Filling:

  • 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup (go for a darker grade, if you can, for richer flavor)
  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 cups pecans, coarsely chopped

In a medium saucepan, combine the butter, maple syrup, and brown sugar. Cook over medium heat, stirring until butter is melted and sugar dissolved. Allow to boil for 1 minute, then remove from heat. Add heavy cream and stir. Add pecans.

Pour filling onto partially-baked crust and spread evenly. Return to oven for 22-25 minutes, or until filling is set when dish is gently shaken. Cool on a wire rack for 1 1/2 hours. (It’s even easier to cut if, after the bars cool completely, you pop them in the freezer for a bit.) Remove bars by grasping the overhanging edges of foil and lifting straight up out of the pan. Cut and serve. Can be kept in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *